Three layers of web design

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People working in the web design industry compare front-end website development to a three-legged stool. These three stages—the three layers of web development—involve the site’s structure, style, and behavior.

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Why should you separate the layers?

When you’re building a web page, its structure should be transferred. To your HTML, visual styles to CSS, and behaviors to scripts. Some benefits of separating layers are:

Shared Resources: If you need to make changes to that file, perhaps to update certain typographic styles. On the website, every page that uses that stylesheet will get the change. There is no need to edit each page of the website individually. Which can be a daunting undertaking for a large website.

Fast Downloads: After your client downloads a script or stylesheet. In the browser load more quickly, improving overall page speed and performance.

Multi-person team: If you have more than one person working on a website simultaneously. Use a version control system that allows files to be checked in and. Out to ensure that everyone working with the latest versions.

SEO: A site that exhibits a clear separation of style and structure is likely to perform better. For search engines because they can more effectively crawl that content. And engage in visual style and behavioral information Can’t understand the page.

Accessibility: External style sheets and script files are more accessible to people and browsers. Software like screen readers can more easily process content from the composition layer without having to deal with styles they might not be using anyway.

Backward compatibility: A site designed with different development layers is more likely to be backward-compatible because browsers and devices that can’t use certain CSS styles or have JavaScript disabled can still view HTML. You can then progressively upgrade your website with features for the browsers that support them.

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HTML: Structure Layer

The Structure layer is where you store all the content that your customers want to read or view. The HTML structure may include text and images and may include hyperlinks that visitors will use to navigate the website. Every aspect of the site’s content should be represented in the composition layer. This separation allows clients who have JavaScript turned off or who cannot see the CSS as far as the entire website, if not all of its functionality.

CSS: Styles Layer

This layer determines how a structured HTML document will look to site visitors and is defined by CSS (Cascading Style Sheets). The style layer typically includes media queries that alter site performance based on screen size and device.

All visual styles for a website must reside in an external stylesheet. You can use multiple stylesheets, but each CSS file requires an HTTP request to fetch it, which affects site performance.

Javascript: Behavior Layer

The behavioral layer makes a website interactive, allowing pages to respond to user movements or changes based on a set of conditions. JavaScript is the most commonly used language for the behavioral layer, but CGI and PHP are also frequently used.

When developers refer to the behavioral layer, most of them mean the layer that is activated directly in the web browser. Use this layer to interact directly with the document object model. Writing valid HTML in the content layer is critical to DOM interaction in the behavior layer. When you build in the behavior layer, you should use external script files, such as CSS, to optimize speed and performance.

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